The best thing we can have in our lives is a community of friends who help us become better. They speak truth because they love us and they want us to get better. Then sometimes we just need the friends in our lives who like to mess with us a little. For the past 5 years, I’ve had this kind of friendship with Matt McKee, Sam Luce, Gina McClain and Jonathan Cliff. That circle has expanded in recent years to include other close friends like Jenny Funderburke, Jim Wideman and others, but these four know me better than anyone else. They’re there to encourage me and help me when I need to make hard decisions. I can’t imagine being in full time ministry without this crew. If you don’t have people like this in your life, what are you waiting for?

One way this group helps me (I think) is by encouraging me to be more succinct. Yes, I send very long emails… and I’ve sent many of them in the wee hours of the morning. I’m a verbose narcolept. I’m getting better though… really I am. However, yesterday I fell off the wagon. I called my friend Matt McKee and got his voicemail. I proceded to leave him a message. By the time I was done, the message clocked in somewhere around 5 minutes. So, Matt called me today and left me a voice message clocking in at 4 minutes exactly. It was a challenge for him, but I thought I’d share with you how Matt is trying to help me. 🙂 Check out the voice mail below.